Events Specialist Kami Zbanek Hill just started at the library about a month ago, but this isn’t her first time working here. She was previously a summer seasonal employee for three seasons before starting on the Community Relations team.
What does your job typically include?
Coordinating events held in the Library and the use of the public spaces. I do a little bit of everything – birthday parties, baby showers, meetings, mayoral forums, weddings, and more.
What made you want to work here?
When I began as a seasonal employee it was because I was working in education, and I was looking for something to bridge the gap between school years. I immediately found a home at the Cedar Rapids Public Library, and the people who work here are truly exemplary members of our community. I jumped at the chance to be on the library team full time.
What’s your favorite part about working here?
I love interacting and meeting the community and making magic. It sounds like an exaggeration, but planning a wedding with folks and watching their eyes light up as you help to make their special day magical is a really rewarding thing.
Do you have any moments or stories from the Library that stand out that you would want to share with patrons?
My favorite memory is from my seasonal days. Doing story time and crafts out in the garden at Brucemore was truly the most picturesque location I have ever worked. The families loved it, and it just felt so unreal, like a page from a storybook. I could not believe it was my job!
What do you like to do when you’re not at work?
I am a professionally trained singer/actor, and I am very involved in local community theater onstage and off. I serve on the board of directors for Mount Vernon Lisbon Community Theater. I have also been sewing since I was five, and I love making costumes. I do alterations, bridal, and LGBTQ/gender affirming tailoring in my spare time. My partner John and I love to travel to art, music and renaissance festivals. We’re big nerds!
What’s your favorite book genre? Why?
I have two, fantasy and true crime. It’s a weird combo, but I love them both. Fantasy because I LOVE a good epic story, the more over the top, the better. True crime scares me just the right amount when I need an adrenaline rush.
Do you have a favorite book or author? What do you like about them?
My current favorite is Leigh Bardugo. Her duology Six of Crows/Crooked Kingdom were incredible heist novels mixed with fantasy and included amazing queer, racial, and disability representation. It rocked my world.
If you could pick a superpower, what would it be?
Teleportation. I get bored on long car trips.